i recently visited florence, alabama. with time to explore, someone mentioned the helen keller birthplace. i was mildly interested and it was a beautiful day, so off we went. i was totally unprepared for the power of that site. the force of helen's powerful spirit and strong intelligence is still to be felt in every room. her portrait in the hall shows a beautiful, strong woman, and she was.
when i saw the bronze statue of helen, at the water fountain, and the look on her face as a giant lightbulb went off, when she learned that water had a name, that she could communicate with others and leave the darkness and solitude of her mind behind…it is powerful.
on the grounds are all the original buildings from when it was a 600 acre farm, minus some of the acreage. helen was born and raised here, and you will find the water fountain out back, between the main house and the kitchen. mostly all the furnishings are original. on the way out, there is a glass case outside, full of moments and gifts sent to her from leaders around the world. there is an old t.v. set that plays over and over a speech helen gave to the lion's club. the life between helen and annie sullivan is palpable and powerful. the speech helen gives ( she learned to speak well ) is so powerful it makes the hairs on your arms stand up! what an inspiring force she still is!